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Tropical North Queensland has much more going on than just the Great Barrier Reef. This part of the Sunshine State is home to some of the most stunning swimming holes in the country and we’re here to shine the limelight on five spots that’ll have you planning your holiday immediately.

Fairy Falls

This deep, green plunge pool tucked away in the rainforest has remained relatively untouched despite its proximity to the popular Crystal Cascades, just outside of Cairns.

Babinda Boulders

Found amongst the tropical rainforest in the foothills of Queensland’s highest mountain, this undulating stream of clear, cool water over smooth granite boulders looks like an abstract masterpiece. The popular and picturesque spot also holds great significance for local Aboriginal people.

Cardwell Spa Pools

This pool was a well-kept secret until recently. No one really knows the reason behind its turquoise colour, but it gets its ‘spa’ title because of the natural depression in the creek bed that causes the water to bubble. It can be found just west of Cardwell near Forest Creek Drive.

Josephine Falls

Josephine Falls is the ideal all-day spot with areas for sunning, sliding and sausage sizzling. Pack a barbecue picnic and make the one hour trip from Cairns to its location in Wooroonooran National Park. 

Stoney Creek Falls

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Skip your morning shower for an au naturale one under the Stoney Creek spray. Follow the rough path at the end of Stoney Creek Road, just five minutes out of Cairns, to find these beautiful falls and shallow pools.